Posted Thursday, June 21, 2007 9:29 AM | Contributed by Jeff
Citing ideal weather, new attractions and a marketing campaign emphasizing a legendary past, the board of directors of Historic Arnolds Park, Inc. (HAPI) on Wednesday announced a bright beginning to the 2007 season at the century-old amusement park complex. HAPI finance manager Lisa Cihlar said as of the end of May attendance at both the park and the Queen II excursion boat was up substantially over last year. Cihlar said gross revenues to date were up 5 to 8 percent, or $15,000, over a year ago.
Read more from The Sioux City Journal.
I thought nostalgia wasn't a business plan? ;)
Anyway, this is great to hear. This park had several near death experiences but it seems they have managed to turn the corner. Some of these people need to give Conneaut a good swift kick since they seem to know what they're doing!
I thought Arnolds was in the middle of nowhere too. The closest major city is Souix Falls, Sout Dakota. They are definatly closer to a main freeway though.
I don't believe Conneaut's ride package has anything to do with the park's recent failures. With a significant wood coaster, a darkride, a classic carousel, a great kiddyland and flat rides that on par with the flat rides at other nearby parks, Conneaut's problem is not what is has... or doesn't have. Much of the problem is due to the way the park was run in the past and the negative reputation it developed as a result of that. If the park was run by more knowledgable and informed people back in the 80's, it might be a thriving amusement park right now.
Why do you continue to insist that the park's location is the source of its problems? It's not like Conneaut only draws people from a five-mile radius, and it's not uncommon for people to flock to a terrible area to do something they enjoy. The New York Yankees draw 4+ million people to the Bronx every year, and I don't consider that to be on the positive side of mediocre.
I'm not even going to respond to you comparing the Bronx to Conneaut. That's the single most ridiculous thing on this subject you've ever posted. Like comparing a flea to scope of the entire solar system.
Anyway, I don't see how my comparison of the Bronx to Conneaut is ridiculous, so if you chose not to elaborate on that, I'll just assume you're just talking out your rear end for the sake of either building up your own confidence or hearing yourself talk. Maybe I sound sarcastic with that comment, but I really don't know where you're coming from. Whatever you happen to be responding to, you're not making it very clear, nor do I believe that anything I said was reason to respond like you did.
Let me get this straight- because Jeff Putz doesn't feel Conneaut has a ride package that makes the trip worthwhile, that's the reason the park has been a failure in recent years? Perhaps you can remind me of the point when Jeff Putz suddenly spoke for the entire population of western Pennsylvania and northeastern Ohio?
*** This post was edited by Rob Ascough 6/22/2007 2:18:16 PM ***
You were questioning my credibility in criticizing the park for its ride package. Nowhere did I say that my opinion was the word of God, as you imply. But seeing as how the park is not a thriving success, I'm going to take a wild stab in the dark and conclude that I'm not the only one who feels that way.
Hang on to the dream, Rob, because before long that's all Conneaut is going to be.
If you wanted to make a point that the population of the Bronx and how it supports a major league baseball team is different from the population in western PA and how it supports a local amusement park, you could have stated your point instead of dismissing the opinion of someone other than you as idiotic or ridiculous or however you decided to cloak your insult. But getting back to the point, I don't see any difference whatsoever aside from varying scales. The Bronx is a lousy place to visit yet people are more than willing to travel there to see the Yankees. I don't see how the lousy Conneaut area works against the park because it's clear that people venture into less-than-desireable areas to do the things they really want to do. Besides, I doubt a lot of first-time visitors or would-be visitors are aware that the town of Conneaut isn't the nicest place, which further supports my claim that the area has very little do with anything.
You're absolutely right that I'm questioning the credibility of your criticisms of the park. I fail to understand how someone who has never visited the park and has no genuine interest in the park can claim to know the reasons why people don't go there. And last time I checked, the lack of traffic wasn't the park's only problem- there's also the nagging problem of them being unable to turn a profit with their income. If people are visiting the park, I'm thinking that people aren't exactly unhappy with what the park has to offer.
I'll hang onto my dream, thank you very much.
Sure, Conneaut could be suffering from a lack of business- perhaps the 100K or 150K people that visit the park annually aren't bringing in enough money for the park to cover expenses. But one of the largest companies in the world- General Motors- is bringing in about a billion times what Conneaut is bringing in, and it can't turn a profit either. There are many other reasons why a business sits on the brink. Perhaps the park does have enough guests, but certain things are preventing the park from realizing a profit. Let's not forget that the park is constantly repaying loans, and the people running the place haven't proved themselves to be the financial experts that the park needs.
I maintain that Conneaut's location has very little to do with its troubles. Parks like Canobie Lake, Funtown//Splashtown, Wild Adventures, Indiana Beach, Knoebels and Holiday World all operate far outside major commercial markets- some even in areas that are definitely not populated by people that can be described as "well off"- but survive just fine. In my eyes, Conneaut's problems are internal and not external... or at least not limited to external.
Why is it that when you don't have an argument you chalk it up to my alleged shortcomings? Furthermore, how is me asking you a question leading you to a "one-dimensional" view of the problem? I didn't bring up the size of the business. I don't care about General Motors. You said they had a "nagging problem" of not being able to turn a profit, and I asked you why.
I'm surprised that someone that claims to be as business-minded as you is thinking of the problem in a one-dimensional way.
So, I ask again, why can't the park turn a profit?
Again, it could be poor management. It could be that loan payments are keeping revenue from paying all the bills. It could be that someone is stealing money from the park. It could be that rides are making money and concessions aren't, or vice versa. Like I said, it could be one or any number of things.
When I don't have an argument, I blame it on your shortcomings? I don't even know how to explain the many reasons why that makes no sense at all. I do have an argument, but because it's something you can't wrap your mind around, you chose to call my statements ridiculous or complain that I'm insulting you. No wonder I get a headache every time I try having a reasonable debate with you.
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